On 2–3 June the Hugo Valentin Centre organised the workshop “The Art of Composing the Picture: Knowledge Production in Conflict and Peacebuilding Interventions”. The objective was to form a group of international scholars with the capacity to present and discuss research within this area.
In a world marked by violent conflicts and international interventions, global policy-makers face a constant need for timely knowledge about various conflict areas. Today, policy-relevant knowledge is often produced and diffused by specialised units within international organisations, their branch or on-site offices, specific fact-finding missions, think tanks, NGOs and impact evaluators, etc. Yet, how do these knowledge-production processes work? Whose knowledge is it that becomes canonised? And which knowledge is privileged by policy-makers and why?
The workshop brought together 17 academics working in this field. The main objective was to synthesise individual approaches and findings into a broader theory of knowledge production in connection to conflict and peacebuilding. Based on this research workshop and an intense scholarly exchange, the participants will illuminate different aspects of this knowledge production, primarily how to evoke an image of the conflict for specific purposes. The workshop, which has received financial support from Riksbankens Jubileumsfond, is expected to result in an edited volume, which should serve as a reference regarding political knowledge production in international relations and peace and conflict studies.